The PINASAKAN Popular Dish Among The Kadazan Dusun

The PINASAKAN Popular Dish Among The Kadazan Dusun

The PINASAKAN Popular Dish Among The Kadazan Dusun

14

DECEMBER, 2016

Borneo
Sabah
Culinary
Travel
Gastranomy

Pinasakan is a popular dish among the Kadazandusun, the collective name for more than 40 sub-ethnic groups that live in Sabah. Kadazandusun is made up of three main groups – the Kadazan/Dusun, Murut and Orang Sungai, and they make up about 1 million of Sabah’s population.

Back in the day, way before refrigerators came into the picture, the Kadazandusun had to find a way to keep food from going bad. One of their staple foods was fish, only obtainable from towns that had access to the sea.

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They travelled into these towns, to look for fish and other things in exchange for items from the highlands where they stayed. They often carried a “wakid” – a handmade bamboo and rattan basket – on their backs that held forest products, vegetables and tobacco to barter for salt, sugar, and fresh fish from the townsfolk.

Since the trip home sometimes took days, the Kadazandusun had to ensure that the fish withstood the long journey. Preservation was key, and hence the birth of pinasakan – referred to as such by the Kadazans, while the Dusuns refer to it as pinarasakan. However, it is more popularly known as pinasakan.

While still in town, they would make Pinasakan. The idea is to extract moisture from the fish, and thus the use of ikan basung, a naturally oily fish that doesn’t dry out even after cooking. Ikan basung is similar to sardines, and is found in waters no deeper than 80m. The fish is cheaply and widely available in Sabah.

To make Pinasakan, the fish is cleaned and cooked in a pot over very low heat, with just asam keping, turmeric, ginger, lemongrass, cili padi and salt. Thanks to the low heat and its naturally oily texture, the fish doesn’t get burnt, and enough moisture is extracted to keep it cooking for about an hour. Pinasakan can be kept for up to two weeks. It is a home-cooked dish and is not readily available in restaurants in Sabah.

Though Pinasakan is not made for the purpose of preservation nowadays, the dish can still be kept for up to five days without refrigeration. It is served with white rice and sambal on the side.

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How to Get Bamboo Drinking Water for Survival

How to Get Bamboo Drinking Water for Survival

How to Get Bamboo Drinking Water for Survival

18

NOVEMBER, 2016

Borneo
Sabah
Jungle
Travel

Bamboo drinking water is another sure source or alternative of water in the jungle…well, that’s what people say anyway. So, we decided to give it a go during our to see how true it is during our Kiau Jungle Trekking.

Bamboo is a fast growing grass found across the world, and is common in many jungles and rainforests, it grows in discrete cylindrical sections which are hollow and wailed at the top and bottom. These sections contain fresh, drinkable water.

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Bring it on!

Trekking through the jungle is tiring work, often requiring cutting a path and negotiating fallen trees, especially where the jungle has been deforested and then regrown with far more underbrush at ground level. It is easy to get lost, tired and dehydration happens quickly due to the heat and humidity. If you find yourself out of fresh water and not near a stream, you can get a drink from a friendly bamboo plant.

How to Get Bamboo Drinking Water

First locate a likely clump of bamboo. It must be one of the largest species that grow to the height of small trees, with thick stalks typically a dozen cm (five inches) in diameter. We used Parang(machete) as our chopping tools to tap on the different sections. Sections with content (hopefully water) normally give out a denser sound. Lastly, you will need to find a small bamboo shoot about one cm (half an inch) in diameter.

Now open up a section of the big bamboo trunk. Make a cut about halfway down the section, and then one a little above it. When you chop, make sure it is a diagonal downward movement. It’s all in the wrist. Without removing your blade from the second cut, twist the knife to pry away the section of the wood between the two cuts. Look into the hole you have just made and you should be able to see some water at the bottom of the section. If there is none, try another section. Smell the water. If it smells bad leave it. Next put your homemade straw into the hole and suck up a little water. If it tastes bad leave it, if it tastes nice then drink up!

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Here’s some video from youtube that give you a closer look on how to get drinking water from a bamboo plant

Did you know that besides drinking water from Bamboo you can also create fire by using Bamboo…cool huh?

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If you know more or had experience on using Bamboo for your survival usage do share with us on the comment box below, we would love to learn new things from you too.

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The Jungle is Dark but Full of Diamonds – Arthur Miller

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Traditional Sabahan Foods that Will Make You Drool

Traditional Sabahan Foods that Will Make You Drool

Traditional Sabahan Foods That Will Make You Drool

27

JULY, 2016

Food
Travel
Tips

Your mom will always be the best cook in the universe. We know that. However, if one day you feel like to try a different kind of food which (would never be better of course) would be different from your usual then this article is for you.

When you are out of travelling, especially in Sabah you might need some hints to not get lost in the variety of tastes and flavors. Thus, we will give you a list of information’s regarding Sabahan foods to have a better understanding what is on your plate. What are the must-eats and must-drinks, and what to avoid in order not to get into any awkward situation.

The following are more beautiful illustrations of traditional Sabahan foods in drawn by Tan Sheau Ling (陈俏绫), a talented Sabah artist. Let’s start! Don’t get overexcited though, and bear in mind that this list is not a rating- it’s just a collection of delicious Sabahan Foods!

Traditional Sabahan Foods That Will Make You Drool

Bambangan Fruit

Bambangan flesh is sweet and sour in taste with pungent flavor, and more fibrous than ordinary mango. Bambangan pickle is made by mixing its flesh and finely grated seeds with salt. Leave the mixture pickled for a week and you will get a white and yellow appetizer called NoonsomBambangan (Jeruk Bambangan). Noonsom means marinated in Kadazan language.

Traditional Sabahan Foods That Will Make You Drool

Butod (Sago Warm)

You need extra courage to swallow a wiggling Butod (sago worm). At the first bite, it tastes like a capsule, and then the magic happens as it bursts and fills your mouth with protein fluid that is as creamy as cod liver oil.

Traditional Sabahan Foods That Will Make You Drool

Hinava Salad

Simply cut the fish (fresh caught is preferred) into small slices, mix and marinate them with diced red onion, young ginger, red chili, bitter gourd, grated Bambangan seeds (for its sterilizing property and to make meat springier) and lime juice. Before serving, add cilantro as a final touch for this sour salad.

Traditional Sabahan Foods That Will Make You Drool

Kuih Jala

The traditional way of making this crispy little snack of Sabah’s Bajau people is by pouring rice milk into a coconut shells punctured with many small holes, gyrating the shell and drop the liquid on a wok of hot oil. Once it turns golden brown, scoop it out and fold it into fan or roll shape while it’s hot. It is a sweet and crispy snack perfect for high-tea.

Traditional Sabahan Foods That Will Make You Drool

Sayur Campuran

Sayur Campuran (Mixed Vegetables) is commonly sold in small packs at tamu (open air market/local). Just take them home, fry it with dried anchovy, salty fish and meat and you will have a yummy dish ready in minutes!

Traditional Sabahan Foods That Will Make You Drool

Tapai

Tapai is an iconic Sabah wine made by traditional method with fermented tapioca, white rice or glutinous rice. Though Tapai is sweet and sour in taste, it’s high in alcohol. Tapai is a necessity during festivals, celebrations and banquet, where it is shared in a big porcelain jar for guests to take turn drinking it from a straw.

Traditional Food in Sabah Borneo

Tuhau

Tuhau is a traditional appetizer made from wild ginger. It’s very simple to make. Just mince it, then mix and stir it with a pinch of salt, lime juice, chili and scallion. Tuhau is sour and spicy with tangy flavor. You either love it or hate it due to its distinctive smell.

Traditional Food in Sabah Borneo

Ikan Basung(Basung Fish)

Basung fish is a cheap but palatable seafood of Sabah. Pan-broil the fishes until they are crunchy. Dip into chili and lime juice and you can have the whole fish including the bones.

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien

Whew, I think that’s all for now. Are you a gourmet expert? Why don’t you join our cooking class and let see how good you are in cooking.

If I missed something, please comment below your favorite must-try dishes! Let’s make this list even longer!

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“Lihing” (rice wine) the local Kadazan alcoholic beverage.

“Lihing” (rice wine) the local Kadazan alcoholic beverage.

Lihing“(rice wine) The Local Kadazan Alcoholic Beverage

15

MAY, 2015

News
Food
Travel

Lihing is the Sabahan rice wine, locally brewed by the indigenous ethics Kadazan of Penampang.

It is made from “Vagas Pulut” (glutinous rice) which is rich with sugar and “Sasad” (natural yeast made from rice) through the process of fermentation.

How to brew Lihing?

1. First cook the glutinous rice, normally “Sagantang” (about 3.5kg) of “Vagas” (rice) is needed to get a few bottles of Lihing. To cook the rice you’ll need to pour water with the ratio of one “Puut” (cup) of water to one puut of rice (1:1) and cook it with slow fire. Traditionally the rice is cook with “Suduvon” (firewood).

2. When the rice is cooked, it is then spread on the “Kohintung” (tray made from young bamboo strips) and allow it to cool.

3. While waiting for the rice to cool, pound the sasad until it become a fine powder.

4. When the rice is cooled and you can touch it without burning your hand, pour the sasad on the rice and mix it well.

5. Finally fill the mixture into the “Bunduon” (ceramic jar) then cover it with “Loun Timadang” (Tarap Leaves) and let it sits for a month.

6. After a month open the lid then put a “tataas” (sieve made of bamboo) into the Bunduon to scooped out the Lihing and transfer it into a bottle.

Lihing is normally served as a drink during all major indigenous celebrations, it is also used for cooking especially to cook the “Sup Lihing” ( chicken soup mixed with rice wine) which is good for ladies in confinement.

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